Due Diligence

The prospective buyer of my 2002 Camry was doing her due diligence yesterday afternoon. She asked me whether she could take the car to a mechanic to have it checked out. I agreed. But something went awry. I wasn’t there, but apparently the mechanic left the gear in “reverse” (or it somehow slipped into reverse) with the door open. The door ran into an object unwilling to be pushed aside. Bent metal tells the rest of the story. The mechanic’s shop has offered to have the damage repaired and/or buy the car. The prospective buyer does not want me to sell to the mechanic, but she still wants to have another mechanic, a friend, check it out before committing to buy it. I’m mulling it over, attempting to decide what I should do. It was just an unfortunate accident; it could have happened to anyone. No one should be penalized for a simple accident. But, in this case, especially not me. Yet I don’t want to protect my financial interests at someone else’s expense. This should not be a particularly difficult issue; so why is it so troublesome?

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More about yesterday. As I am wont to do, I was very early getting to the place where I was scheduled for my CT scan yesterday; closer to 7:30 than to my scheduled 8:00 a.m. appointment. After checking in, I was told my lab results were not yet in; the staff would call at 8:00 to check on them. Before that time arrived, though, I got the bad news: either the blood had not been shipped to Florida or the results of the lab work had not made it to Florida (I’m not sure which…The American Oncology Network is headquartered there, I know). But the staff would check to see if my oncologist’s office, where the blood-letting took place the day before, to see if they still had some of my precious red fluid. If so, I was told, they could send it to the hospital for lab work and I would be able to have my CT scan…just a bit late. As in one or two hours late. “You can leave and come back, if you like,” I was told. Where would I go, I wondered to myself. I decided to stay. Finally, my blood work results came back; results that could have halted plans for the CT scan were not found, so it went ahead. I had an 11:00 a.m. online meeting scheduled. I had already explained my situation to the leader, saying I might not make it. Fortunately, though, I missed only a few minutes. I joined the meeting in progress without any hiccups.

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News about my online grocery order came by email a little less than half an hour before I was to pick it up. Four items were out of stock and five items were substituted for ones I had ordered but which were unavailable. When I got to the store, I was surprised to see a line of cars waiting to pull into the limited number of online-order-pickup parking spaces. I waited for a touch more than an hour before my order was placed in the back of my car. My patience must be improving. I waited the entire hour without getting upset with the universe. I simply acknowledged to myself that the grocery store was inundated with demand after a long period during which everyone was snowed and iced in. I used the time to look lovingly at a grey and tan pit bull puppy in the car next to me. It wanted out of the car, but its human prevented that. Occasionally, the puppy erupted into the most wonderful wolf-like howl.

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Day before yesterday, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced that COVID-19 vaccinations would be made available to people over 65 (it had been available to people over 70). Being barely eligible, in my relative youth, I inquired about where I might be able to schedule my injection. I tried, to no avail, several places that had been suggested to me; they were already full. Finally, though, a friend called to tell me of a place in Little Rock where she had been able to schedule her vaccination. Immediately, I went online to check. Bingo! I got an appointment at 4:06 p.m. on the same day in early- mid-March as my friend. We’ll drive together to get the shot on that day.

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Last night, a writer acquaintance (and fierce Republican, I might add) and his wife treated me to dinner at a nearby Italian restaurant. I have not seen or spoken to them in at least a year, I think, except recently by phone. They had invited me to come by their house beforehand for a drink before dinner. I entered their house wearing my mask, but they were not wearing masks. I succumbed to my discomfort and ill-ease and removed mine. I hope that and the visit to the Italian restaurant were not mistakes. He has had his COVID-19 shots (his 85th birthday is approaching), but his considerably younger wife had not. Not that having the vaccination reduces transmissibility. We did not even touch on politics or on religion (though I was asked about my church). It was a pleasant dinner and the food was good. I was home by 8:00 p.m. I think I left my to-go container of leftovers on the table at the restaurant, though. Or else I will someday stumble upon a container of rotted, malodorous food in some inexplicable place in my house.

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I read this morning that China is celebrating the official end of extreme poverty. That’s certainly something to celebrate. But I have my doubts.

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There are so many things on my mind this morning I could write all day. But I won’t. Time to pause and breathe.

 

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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